WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Four of every five U.S. adults say they are likely -- and four out of every 10 say they are very likely -- to support federal and state political candidates who favor providing incentives to promote increased production and availability of biofuels throughout the United States, according to a survey commissioned by the Biotechnology Industry Organization.

Half of U.S. adults strongly agree that national and state governments are not doing enough to promote production of biofuels -- fuels made from agricultural crops or plant matter. The survey, conducted by Harris Interactive(R), also found that 82 percent of adults say national and state governments should provide financial incentives to biofuels producers to encourage the production and availability of biofuels.

Brent Erickson, executive vice president of BIO's Industrial & Environmental Section, said, "A strong majority of Americans clearly support federal and state financial incentives to promote greater development of biofuels such as ethanol that can help end our addiction to oil. And they seem ready to support political candidates who support biofuels and favor such incentives."

The survey asked respondents how strongly they agreed or disagreed with certain statements about biofuels. Half of U.S. adults (50 percent) strongly agreed and a third (30 percent) somewhat agreed that "Federal and state governments are not doing enough to promote the production of biofuels."

When asked, "Do you think the production and availability of biofuel should be encouraged by national and state governments providing financial incentives to biofuel producers?" four out of five respondents (82 percent) said, "Yes."

Further, when asked, "How important is it to you that biofuel production in America helps to make America less dependent on foreign oil?" two-thirds (67 percent) of U.S. adults said, "Very important."

"The American people recognize that the production of biofuels is a national priority," stated Erickson. "We see public support for continuing and expanding existing tax credits, construction grants and other biofuels production incentives. Next year, Congress will have the opportunity to fund advanced research and provide additional incentives that will help build a growing biofuel industry that will continue to enhance our national security and create new jobs going forward."

Harris Interactive conducted the survey on behalf of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) by telephone within the United States between Oct. 5 and Oct. 8, 2006 among 1,031 adults (age 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, geographic region, and race were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. With a pure probability sample of 1,031, one could say with a ninety-five percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 3 percentage points. However, that does not take other sources of error into account.

BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and 31 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

SOURCE: Biotechnology Industry Organization via PR Newswire.